Indexed on: 01 Jan '14Published on: 01 Jan '14Published in: Antioxidants (Basel, Switzerland)
Green tea is characterized by the presence of an abundance of polyphenolic compounds, also known as catechins, including epicatechin (EC), epigallocatechin (EGC), epicatechin gallate (EGC) and epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG). In addition to being a popular beverage, tea consumption has been suggested as a mean of chemoprevention. However, its mode of action is unclear. It was discovered that tea catechins can react with cytochrome c. When oxidized cytochrome c was mixed with catechins commonly found in green tea under non-steady-state conditions, a reduction of cytochrome c was observed. The reaction rate of the catechins was dependent on the pH and the nature of the catechin. The pseudo-first order rate constant obtained increased in the order of EC < ECG < EGC < EGCG, which is consistent with previously reported superoxide reduction activities and Cu(2+) reduction activities of tea catechins.